Tea tree oil: the all-round skin doctor
It's not actual tea, so don't try sploshing it your mug with two sugars and a dash of milk. This potent oil could fast become your skins new BFF...
It wasn't as if maleleuca alternifolia didn't just trip off the tongue, but anyway, it has been widely known as tea tree oil for almost a hundred years. Hailed initially for it's antiseptic qualities, it has shown to be antimicrobial and aid a host of skin conditions including acne, dandruff and herpes. Buy a bottle of pure oil and use dab a little on your chest to help soothe the bunged-up feeling caused by winter sniffles, or rub a drop onto spots and pimples to help speed up the healing process.
It's hardly surprising that you'll find tea tree oil in any bath-cupboard products. Here are a few of our favourites...
Kiehl's Tea Tree Oil Shampoo, (£17.50, 250ml, kielhs.co.uk) smells great. Tea tree oil, herbal extracts and Pro-vitamin B5 gently cleanse hair without leaving it feeling stripped. If you're lucky you'll get a cooling tingle over the scalp, perfect for waking you up if you're not really a morning person. Hair and scalp are both left feeling fresh and conditioned.
Men-ü Healthy Facial Wash, (£10.50, 100ml, men-u.co.uk) is a real bargain, with one bottle lasting for up to 265 washes. Ideal for oily and normal skin, this concentrated formula gives a light foam and deep clean. Spots and shaving rash are prevented, and skin is left feeling soft.
What Skin Needs Soothing Skin Gel, (14.99, 75ml, whatskinneeds.co.uk) could provide your skin with plenty of relief this winter. Damp weather, biting winds and cranked-up central heating can leave skin dry, cracked and dull, but a few applications of this fresh smelling gel seem to get skin back on track. Tea tree oil, aloe vera and geranium extracts help to soothe and keep blemishes at bay.
Label.men Scalp Tonic, (£10.95, 150ml, labelm.com, Label.m salons) feeds your hair before drying. Splash onto your scalp and allow the New Zealand tea tree oil to soothe, Indian sandalwood to hydrate, peppermint to cool and refresh, carrot root and seed oil to promote healthy cells and clove oil to improve hair density. This spicy mix makes hair smell amazing, so go easy on your aftershave!
Neal's Yard Remedies Lavender & Tea Tree Soap, (£5, 100g, nealsyardremedies.com) works wonders for blemish prone chests and backs, so keep a bar in your gym bag. Don't worry about smelling like granny, the scent is much fresher than you imagine.
Neal's Yard Remedies Organic Tea Tree Oil (£7.20, 10ml, nealsyardremedies.com). Sometimes only a drop or two of pure oil will do. Use sparingly added to your usual moisturiser to keep skin spot free.
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